Guy Who Tried To Extort YouTubers With Bogus DMCA Takedowns Agrees To Settlement

from the that-was-mighty-quick dept

Just a couple months back we wrote about YouTube suing a guy for trying to extort YouTubers with bogus DMCA notices. The evidence was pretty damning that Christopher Brady had been harassing and demanding money from various YouTubers and using the threat of bogus DMCA notices (which could kill someone's account) for leverage. The complaint also suggested that Brady was looking to swat some YouTubers as well. As we noted in our original post, the case hinged on Section 512(f) of the DMCA, which was supposed to be the tool to prevent false takedown notices -- but, which in practice is effectively a dead letter, as 512(f) claims rarely go anywhere. If there was some hope that a case with the facts so blatant might breathe new life into 512(f), well, that ended quickly as Brady has wasted no time at all in agreeing to settle the case.

The settlement is pretty straightforward. Brady agrees not to send any more bogus DMCA notices to YouTube and also agrees not to "misrepresent or mask" his identity on any Google property. He also agreed to pay $25,000 to Google, which probably about covers their legal bills for bringing this case. Brady also released an apology statement, which suggests he may have sent more bogus DMCA notices than were included in the lawsuit.

“I, Christopher L. Brady, admit that I sent dozens of notices to YouTube falsely claiming that material uploaded by YouTube users infringed my copyrights. I apologize to the YouTube users that I directly impacted by my actions, to the YouTube community, and to YouTube itself.”

Of course, while it's good to see such an apology and settlement, it still doesn't change the fact that bogus DMCA notices happen all the time. While Brady may have been more extreme and more blatant than most, there's still a huge problem with a law that creates a situation that mere accusation will often get content removed.

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Filed Under: 512(f), christopher brady, dmca, dmca 512, dmca 512f, dmca notices, extortion, shakedown, takedowns
Companies: google, youtube

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  1. icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 18 Oct 2019 @ 1:47am

    Re: Re: bogus notices

    The victims get a message from YT telling them the strike will stand & to not do it again.

    This is why the victims need to sue, its REALLY hard to spin actual creators who are being destroyed as pirates.
    Even if the "penalty of perjury" was $5/$10/$20, it would create a ripple right quick.

    Like when HBO demanded be delisted for having pirate content... $5. Multiply that by the 90% of shitty notices they get from alleged rights holders suddenly those shitty notices are getting much better.

    Yes someone can always find a way to game the system but many of these extortionists are saying send us money or we give you another strike creating a trail to show abuse & get that idiot blacklisted from using the system.

    Because it will be hard is no reason to not fscking try.
    When it becomes clear that they've actually tightened up the DMCA notice requirements, its harder for asshats.

    Right now the system is ripe for abuse because it is completely unbalanced to assume anyone who says they are a rightsholder has to be assumed as such even when they don't even include the damn registration number.

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